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TYPOS REVISITED

July 21, 2021

            I last talked about this in 2017, but due to a recently formed forum on Facebook, and through several others, with similar posts, I thought it warranted a revisit. I’m including the original post, tweaked to include the latest info.

I originally blatantly copped this inspiration from a Facebook friend. He ranted that several of his “friends” complained that though he was a writer, some of his posts were full of typos. What gives?

Most recently, another poster who is a total stranger ranted about people who corrected grammar when people speak. This is irritating to the extreme. I’ve seen it in movies and TV, and in real life. It’s like your annoying friend who has to show how intellectual they are.

            Back to regular texts, I’ve talked about typos in past posts, directly and indirectly but in the context of editing.

            In this article, I’ll just talk about typos specifically.

JUSS CUZ YOU’RE A WRITER…

            Maybe this goes back to the days of pen and paper or something. Think technology.

            When people had the time to manually write something with pen/pencil and paper, they had to think about what they were doing in a long-form manner. It took manual dexterity and physical ability, effort to form those letters and words. Because of that, more immediate in-the-moment thought went into every word. An experienced writer, if not on a tear, was more likely to spell correctly way back when.

            Well, maybe. Given some of the hand-written letters and manuscripts I’ve seen, that’s not always a given. There are plenty of examples of glaring typos in manuscripts. Let’s just say, sometimes an author getting on a hand-writing tear could’ve been an example of being in slower motion than in today’s world of the computer keyboard.

            Today, with keyboards, where you can type a mile a minute, it’s a lot easier to create typos. If you don’t go back over every word, every sentence, those little nasties slip by. Sometimes, EVEN WHEN YOU DO go back over what you wrote, something will slip by. This doesn’t even include thumb typing and auto correct on phones. Aaagh!

            There’s an old adage. You see what you thought, not what you wrote.

            You can be the best author in the world, or to be more realistic, the mostest, biggestest most best-selling author in the world. However, by that, you’re that way because you have an army of proofreaders and editors to back you up before any gibberish you write ever gets to print!

THERE’S SELF-EDITING AND THERE’S SPONTANEOUS

            When you’re speaking through writing, off-the-cuff, it comes with all your baggage. We all have typing quirks, no matter how good a typist we are. Some of us are a lot better than others when it comes to tapping keys. The better we are, the fewer “tot he’s” we make (that’s “to the”) or “form” instead of “from” and such… leaving letters off etc. Now, knowing or not even knowing all of our typing quirks, how many make a spontaneous burst, like on Facebook, then go back and self-edit before hitting SEND?

            Yeah, I thought so.

            How many are so sure we already did self-edit and can’t see the forest through the trees?

            How many type with their fingers or thumbs on a phone and have auto-correct as I alluded to above? Have you tried to edit some of that crap and just gave up in frustration when the app keeps trying to correct it back? Yeah, I could rant all day about apps.

REAL-WORLD EXAMPLE

            Back when I originally wrote this article in 2017, I had just launched a new Facebook page to get ready for the first Gold Series novel Lusitania Gold. The page is called Detach And His Search For Gold.

            I worked at a furious pace, did all the preliminaries, uploaded a few images, set up an initial story and had everything set. Then I sent it out and invited a bunch of friends.

            Guess what?

            After inviting what I figured was all my interested friends, I happened to glance at the title of my page.

            Deatch And His Search For Gold.

            Aaaagh! In my haste and quick edit, I misspelled Detach, the main character’s name. I’d just invited a whole bunch of friends to my page and couldn’t even get the spelling of my main character right.

            I was an established author with one book, #2 on the way, and I made a big blunder.

            Typo.

            Aaagh! Double aaagh!

            I fixed the error after going through a process with Facebook to figure out how to do it. Apparently, it wiped out all my invites and I had to do them over again. Maybe those invitees got the invite twice and thought I was dogging them. I don’t know.

            My rush, or maybe forest-through-the-trees mentality caused a semi-embarrassing typo.

            It was semi-embarrassing because I’ve been at this long enough to know that this stuff happens. You can’t beat yourself up about it.

I repeat.

            You can’t beat yourself up about it – stuff happens. So don’t let others.

DON’T LET ANYONE BEAT YOU UP FOR TYPOS, JUSS CUZZ YOU’RE AN AUTHOR

            Just because you’re an author doesn’t mean you can write letter-perfect.

            If that were the case, why would there be editors?

            I rest my case.

            Happy writing!

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